Spaced Cowboy

Mass Effect 2

196 posts in this topic

Just watched a commercial on TV during the 4th quarter of the Minnesota, New Orleans playoff game.

 

Wow, at least a full minute of awesomeness.

 

I'm going to have to push through ME1 now. I bought it on steam some time ago, and it is in the queue.

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It's well worth it. I finished it a few weeks ago. You'll be able to port your ME1 character into ME2, so that's fun.

 

I found the controversial sex scenes in ME1 to be very discreet and tastefully done - not at all what the critics had said it would be.

 

Frankly, I felt shortchanged. I hope ME2 will feature Cleveland Steamers, Cincinnati Bowties, Pittsburgh Pancakes, and a heaping side order of Belgian Biscuit.

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I started on the Xbox 360 when it came out, but I'm just not an Xbox type. I did the same thing with the KOTOR games. Started on the Xbox, did not finish, then went right to the PC and played them through.

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Frankly, I felt shortchanged. I hope ME2 will feature Cleveland Steamers, Cincinnati Bowties, Pittsburgh Pancakes, and a heaping side order of Belgian Biscuit.

 

Eh...hmm. I'm inclined to google those phrases, but i'm not sure i want to know...

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Ayup, one of the "must get" games! Pre-ordered it a couple of weeks ago... but for us EU people, we'll only get it Friday-ish, but not too bad, since it's there for the weekend!

I've read that it will include something called the 'Cerberus Network' which will basicaly act like DRM to encourage people to buy a legit copy, and cut down the re-sale market etc.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_Effect_2

Nothing wrong with that. I hate most DRM with the burning passion of a thousand suns, because it can potentially screw up my ability to install a game for good (like if EA goes under etc.).

 

But this? Getting some perks if you want to, but still having a game that works without internet connection/verification? Swell.

 

This said, BioWare and Firaxis are the two companies where I buy games without even bothering with reviews or anything, so that may bias my point of view.

 

Cheers, LT.

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The wiki says the Cerebus Network is where you will get your DLC etc. If you "lose" the card you will need to pay USD15.00 for access. The game will not use Securom, but a simple disc in draw check by the looks of it.

Edited by Nugog
X-post with LT.

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some more info on it(the Cerberus stuff) in this gamasutra article, good discussion/opinions at the end of the article sheding more light on it:

 

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/26919/Mass_Effect_2_Combats_Used_Sales_Piracy_With_Cerberus_DLC_Network.php

 

I pretty much prefer this to rootkits(and potential damage caused) as DRM, so in principle i think it is a good way to encourage legitimate sales.

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Please don't abuse the term rootkit. The only rootkit DRM was the Sony CD issue from 2005.

 

SecuROM and its ilk sucks, but they are not rootkits.

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Cerberus Network... an oddly threatening name for the designer's DLC manager... considering that Cerberus are meant to be the games' enemies. ... I suppose it is tongue-in-cheek.

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Cerberus Network... an oddly threatening name for the designer's DLC manager... considering that Cerberus are meant to be the games' enemies. ... I suppose it is tongue-in-cheek.

Heh, BioWare has apparently lots of tongue-in-cheek elements in ME2... for example, this video:

[noparse]

[/noparse]

 

(note: slight spoiler, nothing story-wise, but reveals a team member not listed on the official ME homepage, hence not embedded, copy&paste the link...) - it's fantastic! :D

 

Cheers, LT.

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I rarely get pulled in for full-price games, but I've been heading toward the event horizon on this one for a while, and finally pulled the trigger today. Damn them and their pre-order armor. :doitnow!: Don't know that I'll even get to it until next weekend though.

 

Cerberus Network... an oddly threatening name for the designer's DLC manager... considering that Cerberus are meant to be the games' enemies. ... I suppose it is tongue-in-cheek.

 

Without getting too far into spoilers, they will be playing a bigger role than their sidelines-mentions in ME1, so it does make some amount of sense.

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One of my main tasks right now is to hold off playing ME2 for another month or so. I hope I can last ;) Mass Effect is one of the very best games I ever played, so I'm currently trying not to read much about ME2, or else I won't be able to resist.

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I just read a review saying you should really play the first game first or you will miss out on some of the references(IGN review). So for those thinking of picking this up that should be a consideration maybe?

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I just read a review saying you should really play the first game first or you will miss out on some of the references(IGN review). So for those thinking of picking this up that should be a consideration maybe?

 

I think that's fairly true, though I don't have ME2 yet. I mean, it's a game where the story has a large role. Of course you'll enjoy it more if you know the story of the first one completely.

 

Also, the sidequests, conversations and the like in ME2 depend on what you did in ME. If you don't play the first one, you won't notice it. Otherwise, you could have great feelings when you realize that something is happening because of a choice you made in ME1.

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I would definitely recommend playing the first one, personally. As Solver says, one of the features of ME2 is the ability to import an end-game file from the first game and carry over your story decisions from the first one, so that decisions have continuing impact over the series.

 

Not having played ME2 yet, I can't comment on how much they've pulled it off this first time out the gate with that feature. But I know that it sounds really cool to me. I've seen very few games that gave you export files from one game to another, and none that had that system affect the story.

 

That said...

 

If you don't play the first one, you won't notice it.

 

Probably true. Bioware wouldn't want to be unwelcoming to new customers.

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The first one was a good game. Not perfect by any means, but ranging in above-average to industry leader across the various elements of gameplay it attempts.

 

One thing is that the first game does have a "New Game Plus" option, so you can replay and replay and get progressively more and more powerful. I wonder how that factors in to the second game if you port over a superpowered character.

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Still i'm not sure how useful review sites are these days, they often have their commitment part of the 'marketing budget' from AAA devs, be it in sweetners or out-right bribes.

 

Dont forget to check any 'user' ratings also - this can often help you tell if the game is really as good as it's being hyped. If both sets of rating add up - then you havent got another Spore on your hands! ;)

 

But having said that I'm 90% certain that Mass Effect 2 will be a stonking game, Bioware are pretty decent :b:

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LOL, I'm trying not to read to much about this.

 

I'm trying to finish DA:O, then ME1, then I'll take a gander at this.

 

Plus I'm looking at Fleet command which is a lot like SOASE (I'll need to do a write up on it when I actually get through the tutorial and play a game.

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wise to keep 'too much info' at bay on the ME2 front ;)

 

"So are these systemic changes good or bad, on balance? It depends on what you liked (or didn't) about the first game. If Mass Effect was a sci-fi shooter saddled with excess RPG micromanagement, Mass Effect 2 is the ideal evolution. If Mass Effect was an RPG that tips its hat to third-person action games, Mass Effect 2 may be less satisfying than expected."

 

from that article - it's not really spoilery(but i guess obviously a bit as it talks about the mechanics in the game etc), but my summery kind of took in the detail and boiled it down. It is going more the way of say Fallout(Bethesda), in that it is a more action orientated game compared to the first, and overall the feeling is the game actualy benefits from this. Now if your prefer Fallout 1+2 to bethesdas Fallout you might not agree :)

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My brother finished it on the PC. He said there have been a couple of clipping errors, where either the camera or the player ended up behind a wall. However, they have gotten rid of the driving exploration aspect of the game, which he thought was a good improvement.

 

He did also say that the game had signs of being not quite completely polished - rather like the first game did. He suspected this was likely due to EA's executive meddling. Overall it is still a good game.

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I'm partway in now. As far as the "is it an RPG?" thing goes that really depends on what you expect from an RPG. It is not very strategic and the stats/leveling system has been boiled down a bit. ME1 lacked strategical depth too, so I wasn't expecting improvement there anyhow. The simplification of the stats is good, I think. ME1 was full of unimportant choices because it always took lots of increases in a talent before you reached anything big in a skill, but there generally was no point in spending points to do anything but reach one of those landmarks. Now you just have only the 4 different landmarks in each skill, no tiny increments. Overall, ME2 has so far wasted less of my time doing stuff like driving or visiting equipment screens to upgrade from the Avenger Mark Five to the Avenger Mark Six for a whole +3% increase to damage. I suspect the mini-games will still become tiresome, but it's not as bad as ME1.

 

I don't think the RPG element of the combat has been reduced at all; but it was never the only thing there. Powers are as useful and important as they ever were (unless you're a soldier class, I guess) but the shooting part of combat is still important too. That has been changed a lot, though; between slower-moving characters, quicker death, and AI that actually knows how to take cover and attack from a distance, it's now pretty much Gears of War with a new, tweaked version of ME1's leveling/powers system. Perhaps not very original, but fun and a lot better than ME1. I'm already sold on the changes to the combat/statistics side of things.

 

I've noticed a few clipping errors as well - one character in particular seems to love to lean back in her seat til she's melding with it. I'm still far more impressed with its polish than with ME1, though. It runs better: max settings at 1600x900 and it looks smooth, though I haven't bothered to check FPS. ME1 I have to turn down to 1280x720, and even then it lurches sometimes in combat. Certainly not to say it's perfect, but I've been enjoying it so far.

 

Ultimately it's the engine performance/graphics/animation and the writing that I have significantly higher expectations for this time out. The former stuff is indeed a step up. My only complaint is that it's even more clearly an XBox port, because it doesn't even have PC features that ME1 had like hotkeys for jumping to individual menu screens. (That said, I'll gladly trade those for ME2's improved optimization. Like I said, it runs better AND looks better than ME1 ever did on this machine.) The writing I'm not going to comment on until I finish it (and of course then in spoiler tags).

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